A Socratic dialog with the American People…
So, you say you’re tired of all that messy democracy stuff, and would like to entertain something else?
Yes! Can’t we just elect a strong president who will get everything we want done without all that silly congressional and judicial sideshow? The endless crisis and name calling is driving us crazy!
Hmmm…so you mean something like National Socialism, where Germany democratically elected a strong leader who subsequently burned down the Reichstag and used that to pass laws that effectively made him a dictator?
Absolutely not! The Nazis were horrible people who caused vast human suffering and destruction!
Ok, so something like National Socialism, but without the racism, dictatorship, Holocaust, invasion of Europe, destruction of the homeland, etc., etc.
Ummm…can’t we find another term that isn’t so politically charged? Something that describes strong leadership that can get stuff done without all the theatrics?
Well, how about a “Managed Democracy?”
You know, like they have in Russia, where you have a strong leader who is “elected” by the public, but then uses that power to change the rules as he sees fit to ensure that only he and members of his party stay elected. Oh, and muzzling of the media, too, and jailing of political dissidents, etc., etc.
Well…on second thought, we would still like the ability to elect a strong leader, but somehow make sure that he doesn’t go too far overboard and can be reined in if he starts to go crazy, etc.
Soooo…you mean like a system of “checks and balances?”
Yeah, we like the sound of that!
And the people overseeing these “checks and balances” would be democratically elected, too?
Sure, so we can make sure to have people who represent what we want. But without all the drama and name-calling we have now.
So, basically, a system with a strong leader who won’t ever abuse that power, who is overseen by an elected congress of officials representing the vastly different views of some 300 million people living in a nation the size of a continent, who will always work together in a polite and professional manner to resolve issues important to the country, but whose reelection is contingent on how well they barter for the views they represent?
Yes! Perfect! But the system has to more or less run itself – we’ve got way too much other important stuff to do than to have to oversee the people we elect, or check into the ones who want to get elected. Oh, and they have to pay for their own elections, too. We wouldn’t want to be called socialist or anything like that. Free market, baby!
And how is that system different than what you have today?
It won’t have all the name-calling and drama!
(long sigh. rolls eyes) I see. Well, good luck with that!